North Waziristan Agency tribes warn they will ‘besiege’ Ayesha Gulalai’s house
North Waziristan Agency elders have claimed that Ayesha Gulalai — who has accused Imran Khan of sexual harassment — did not belong to Waziristan “because whatever she had done during last four days was against the norms of tribal people”.Updated: Aug 05, 2017, 22:38 IST
A member of the North Waziristan Agency grand tribal jirga — a collection of elders — has warned they will besiege the house of a woman lawmaker who has accused cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan of sexual harassment if she doesn’t produce proof of the same.
Ayesha Gulalai was elected to the National Assembly in 2013 from a reserved seat for women in the tribal areas bordering Afghanistan on a Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party ticket. She stirred up a major row on Tuesday by alleging party chairman Khan sent her “obscene” text messages and had also harassed other women leaders.
Gulalai has also claimed that PTI spokesperson Naeem-ul-Haque sent her a text message in which he professed, “I am alone and want to marry.”
On Saturday, Malik Jalal Khan Wazir, speaking at a press conference, said Gulalai neither belonged to Waziristan, nor was she a tribal woman “because whatever she had done during last four days was against the norms of tribal people”.
“We cannot expect a tribal woman to adopt such lifestyle. The woman is unaware of the South and North Waziristan Agencies because she is not a resident of the tribal region,” Wazir claimed, adding that tribal families would never allow their daughters to show up before the media.
However, Gulalai responding swiftly, telling a local channel that she had not spoken up without evidence.
On Friday, Parliament passed a motion to constitute an inquiry committee of the House to hold an in-camera probe into Gulalai’s allegations. The inquiry committee was constituted on a suggestion from Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi.
Parliamentarians from all parties except PTI welcomed the move. However, PTI MPs later changed their stance after Khan also endorsed the move.
Gulalai has showed the alleged messages to senior journalist Hamid Mir. However, ever since she made the accusations against Khan, she has become a target — both by PTI supporters and by the party itself. Her sister — national squash champion Maria Toorpakai — has also been the subject of abuse.
PTI has also served Gulalai a legal notice, demanding she reply within 10 days or pay compensation to the tune of Pakistani Rs 30 million.